Playing with paint

Playing with paint
abstract art

28 August 2015

Poor Sad Garden

While I was over at Serenity recently it nearly broke my heart to see my lovely garden as it is now so neglected.  Some of the plants have died from lack of care and water.  

Because the remaining  rose bushes were so bad I decided to cut them out as well.  One was a beautiful Red, and the other a Yellow.  The Peace rose was just a gnarled stump in the ground with a small twig so that went too.  I just didnt want to see them die lingering deaths.

The top two photos of the collage are of the rock wall garden on the left when my son first made it, and the other photo was taken from the top as it is now.  You can still see a bit of sad rosemary bush among the grass and weeds.

The bottom two photos are of the rose garden, on the left in its glory, and on the right as it is now.   Among the grass are the remains of my shasta daisies, and a cactus.

Unfortunately himself is just a stubborn old git and has decided because he failed at growing a few beans when he was a boy he does not want anything to do with looking after gardens.  r.i.p. my garden...all those years I tended to you were for nothing, but gave me pleasure.
Top left the original garden with lavenders and rosemary . Top right looking down onto this garden from the top.    Bottom Left the rose garden how it looked when I was there.  Bottom right now full of weeds and grass.
I will just finish off with some old photos of the garden flowers.


till next time  enjoy


22 August 2015

Fabric Book and Tast

Good Afternoon, my friends.  Despite my promises to myself to blog more often, I keep getting distractions.  II only hope that I still have some friends out there in Blogland.  I have only gone missing temporarily.

I dont know if anyone remembers the butterfly cushion I was working on eons ago, but I finally made it into a cushion cover...
 At long last the pages for my fabric book are being stitched together.  I finished all the individual pages and stitched them back to back.  Now I feel I am on the home run.  I thought if I did one page a day it would not take me long to get them together, but there have been other distractions.  I was going to stitch the pages together with herringbone stitch but my shaky hands will not allow me to slide the needle along the inside of the seam so I resorted to an easier way, which although not as tidy will work ok and will be covered up when the front cover goes on.  I have started by attaching the pages to the back cover which is made from the purple/blue fabric, and this is continued to cover the spine.
sewing the pages together

this is the pile of pages ready to stitch together
In 2013I started on a band sampler for something to do.  Nothing as efficient or wonderful as Sharon's, but just random stitching to keep my hand in to remembering the stitches.   I have joined the new Tast challenge for this year, and this sampler will be perfect to add the new stitches to.  Here are some photos of what I had done so far.




I have even taught myself to do a reasonable long and short stitch
While I was at Nanango I had a lovely coffee, chat and stitching morning with my friend and neighbour Julie.  She is working on a white on white schwalm cushion cover and this is when I started sewing the pages together.  I get more done when I have company.

Till next time enjoy your day wherever you are.




31 May 2015

It's Been a While



It has been a while since I have been able to post photos.   My son and his wife have now settled into a house in Surrey in  the UK, and are thoroughly enjoying it.
This is the back yard of the house they are living in since moving to the UK.  It is in Surrey and the pups are having a lot of fun in the lovely garden, and intrigued by all the new types of wildlife.
This is the front of the house.

They were feeling the cold when they arrived

Since I last posted I have had my operation for the hernia, and also more heart troubles. Think the poor old ticker is getting a bit tired.  Last Thursday week I was admitted with heart failure.  An xray showed and enlarged heart and fluid , which was caused by the specialists in Brisbane changing my medications in February and taking me off the bloodpressure/fluid tablets and reducing the bloodpressure one to half the strength.

 I had been to the doctor with a choking cough and gasping for  breath, weight gain, and high blood pressure........only to be told it was a cold night, that I had asthma, and my BP monitor was faulty I couldnt possible have readings so high 170-180...when hers only read 166/whatever.

Anyway I insisted on something else being done, and she sent me for xray and a nuclear imaging test for clots in the lungs.   She was in a panic when I phoned her for the results, and told me to be careful and come back in the morning when she would contact the cardiologist because I had heart failure...........hello?  .......I wonder why she did not ring the specialist when she received the results to have me admitted to the cardiac ward......

I want to change doctors, but would I get anything different.

I must be a pretty tough old girl though because I have come through all this.......a lot weaker and more breathless, but alive.

 Does anyone remember the gum tree in the park next door behind number 3 unit at the back of where I live now.   It dropped heaps and heaps of leaves on the patios and did the same here.  I was forever raking up leaves and twigs, and could not walk outside for gumnuts sticking in my feet if I was barefoot.

Here is a photo of when a branch dropped onto the roof and the fence during one of the storms.

Well guess what!!!!   It has GONE!!!!!!  Evidently the council got tired of the complaints about the damage to the units with blocked up gutters.  To say nothing of the cost to the owners and their insurance.......
Yippee here it is now....
No more rotten leaves and blocked drains and gutters....wonderful.....happy face.

I cant understand why anyone would plant gums anywhere near buildings anyway.  So hope this does not upset  the greenies.....it was damn dangerous  and finally someone saw some sense.

Since I came home from hospital last week I am feeling better, but still having trouble breathing.  Thankfully Blue Care come and do my vacuuming and mopping for me and himself took me to do a stock up shop before he left.  

My new desktop is chugging along nicely and I have so much more space on my desk.  I have had all my files transferred over now, so have access to them.  My young tech Anthony did a wonderful job, and I learned so much from him......it is good to have everything working again.

For now I am just resting and doing a minimum of things.  Cant walk to the shops on my own  yet, because of the breathlessness,  but that will come.

The good news is that as I lose the extra fluid I also lose weight....am down to 64.5 kg from 68.5 kg when I went to hospital.

Bye for now, thanks for visiting and listening to all my health problems once more.  I will try to behave in future.














22 March 2015

Long time with no post

Good morning everyone, it is quite a while since I posted because my everyday life took over.  I have had a lovely holiday and since my last post been in hospital 3 times.  So my time has been ruled by other things since before xmas.

My son has given me a new computer, which he has not had time to finish configuring.  He still has to transfer the files from my old computer to the new one.  The main thing is I have the basics for now.

He and his wife and the pups have today flown out of Australia to move to the UK, so it is a very sad day for me.  With what has been happening to my health issues, my plans to move there with them  are on a total back burner.  I am going to miss them so much.

As far as the computer is concerned he has put skype on, and a programme so he can remotely finish adding my files over to the new computer.

I am also waiting for my photos and the programme I use to come over to the new computer as well, so there are no photos with this post...... Sorry.

With my health issues, my heart just about gave way a few weeks ago, and I was lucky to survive.  While at the Gold Coast I had to go to hospital with what I had been told was diverticulitis, which meant an overnight stay and antibiotics.  It was the 3rd time I had had the same problem with excrutiating pain in my hip.  Then a couple of weeks ago it happened again, and it seems that there is no sign of diverticulitus, but the problem is bursitus, and also 2 hernias.

After 2 weeks I am still not pain free, and have an appointment on the 15th April with a surgeon to decide what to do.......so will keep you all posted.

Anyway folks, I am sorry for the lack of communication.  I am now on facebook if anyone wants to friend me......under the name Shirley Margaret.   (I didnt like to put my full name to keep it more private).   My icon is a vase of white lillies, and my header is a picture of yellow daisies.

Better go, and hopefully will have less boring things to blog about in the near future.

Hope all is well with my wonderful friends.




22 December 2014

Gift from a friend


Before I came to the coast, had a morning with my good friend Dianne, when we exchanged xmas gifts.  she is such a beautiful and clever friend, and I am the lucky recipient of another of her wonderful creations. I am now the proud owner of a colourful table centre, made from beautiful batik fabrics from Wacky Jacky.

To compliment the table centre Di also made a set of 6 coasters from her wonderful stash of kaffe fassett fabrics. ( think thats how it is spelt) Di said she chose the colourful fabrics to brighten my flat when the weather is cold and grey, if and when I go to the UK later next year.

My son and his wife are moving back to her UK homeland in march next year and want me to go and live with them there. They dont want to leave me here on my own where i live. It is all in the lap of the gods at present for me, because first I have to get the go ahead from my cardiologist, and second have to be accepted and given a visa.

But what better way to enjoy the last years of my life taking a chance and seeing something of the world.  Scary stuff!!!!! DIL has promised me a trip to Paris so what better incentive could there be.

Food is a big thing at chez Barclay in the run up to xmas with the fridge bursting at the seams.  I have been treated to some nice meals by N and A.  We have not even got to xmas day and already I have gained a kilo. 
Forgot to take pics of the peking duck, but the lamb koftas and greek salad last night was delicious. No I did not eat that big meal mine was a much smaller one.

After that meal I was very good and had fresh pawpaw or papaya as it is known elsewhere for breakfast. Straight out of the garden...yum....didnt take any of the weight off though.

The pups of course are as lovely as ever, and have just come home from a run in the park.  This is how they spend their days when not out playing.  Lying round sleeping in the airconditioning




20 December 2014

Christmas Greetings and a Reunion

On wednesday my big son came and collected me and bought me down to the Gold Coast so I can spend Christmas with him and his wife and of course the pups.

It is good to be down here with them. Already i am being spoiled with lovely meals. Ali always leaves a lovely floral piece by my bed when i come and this year was no different. This one is very festive.

Recently I have been back in touch with my young sister Jackie who I have not seen for a long time. She now lives on the gold coast after moving from western australia. She came to see us today, and we had a lovely visit sitting on the back deck of my sons home catching up in our news.

This is a pic of us together.


Jay, as we call her, has written some childrens books about the pottaroos a small wallaby that is an endangered species here.  she wrote them many years ago, but because of a family illness publishing them had to wait.
Now she has published the first two stories and they are delightful books.  she has a wonderful empathy with children and these are perfect stories that young children can absorb. At the same time it creates an awareness of the plight of the pottaroos . I will add a link to learn more about the potoroos www.potoroonies.com.au



Well my friends, I will leave you while I loll around the pool deck.   I hope that each and every one of you enjoys a happy and joyous Christmas










26 November 2014

Half Dolls and a Link

Some years ago, one of my sisters was making porcelain half dolls and I started off making them into tassels.

Then I decided to work out a skirt in the manner of a pin cushion.  I had great plans to market the design, but nothing came of it.  I recently came across a lovely lady called Maureen Greeson, who collects  half dolls, and have given her the pattern where I am sure it will be more useful than sitting in the box on my shelf.  

You can find her blog at http://www.maureensvintageacquisitions.blogspot.com.au/2014_11_01_archive.htm
where she has a link to the pattern.

Maureen has a wonderful collection of beautiful vintage half dolls, and also a tutorial for a skirt she has made as a base for a lovely flounced overskirt.

Pay a visit to Maureens blog because she also does crazy quilting and  has lots of eye candy